Presbyopia Treatment in Chesapeake, VA
The vision experts at Tidewater Eye Centers are dedicated to helping patients improve their eyesight. Any changes in vision should be checked by your eye doctor. Our optometrists and ophthalmologists are experienced in diagnosing and treating presbyopia. If you suspect you may be experiencing presbyopia, or if you are looking for solutions beyond reading glasses, contact us to schedule a consultation.
What is Presbyopia?
Presbyopia is a natural part of the aging process that often begins to affect people after the age of 40. It is characterized by difficulty seeing up close and people usually notice it while reading, looking at phones or tablets, or doing detailed work. While it does not typically cause any pain or complications, presbyopia can interfere with day-to-day activities. People often turn to reading glasses or bifocals as a solution, but many seek a more permanent solution. Surgical options for presbyopia can give people freedom from the inconvenience of reading glasses.
What Causes Presbyopia?
Different parts of your eye each play a role in the quality of your vision. Light rays filter through the cornea, which is the outermost layer of your eye, and then passes to the eye’s lens. The lens is responsible for focusing light toward the retina, which is a layer of nerve-rich tissue at the back of the eye. Presbyopia occurs when the lens loses elasticity or stiffens with age. With less flexibility and muscle control, the lens cannot properly process light, which results in vision problems at close distances.
Symptoms of presbyopia occur gradually. You may first notice yourself holding your phone or reading material at arm’s length. Eventually presbyopia can cause:1
- Blurry near vision (trouble seeing close objects)
- Eye strain or headaches
- Difficulty reading or performing close work
- Vision that is worse when you are tired or in dim lighting
Presbyopia vs Hyperopia (Farsightedness)
Presbyopia and hyperopia, commonly known as farsightedness, are both refractive errors that make it difficult to see close-up. While the symptoms of each are the same, the way that they develop and the way they are treated is different. While presbyopia is age-related and occurs gradually, farsightedness is due to a short eyeball or corneal abnormality and can affect children or adults.2 Presbyopia will affect almost everyone over a certain age, while farsightedness is usually genetic.
Treatment for Presbyopia
Everyone’s vision is unique, so we offer a variety of presbyopia treatment options to help you reduce or eliminate the need for glasses or contact lenses.
Monovision LASIK or PRK
Monovision is an approach to refractive surgery in which your surgeon corrects distance vision in your dominant eye only, while the other eye is either left with natural vision or corrected for near vision. Monovision relies on your brain’s visual cues to adapt so both eyes work together for clear vision. Since monovision LASIK or PRK doesn’t work for everyone, your eye doctor will have you test it out with contact lenses prior to scheduling a procedure.
Custom Cataract Surgery or RLE
Cataract surgery, in which the eye’s natural lens is replaced with an intraocular lens (IOL), can be an opportunity for improved vision if you choose an advanced IOL or lifestyle lens. These premium lenses can improve near vision, as well as correct for astigmatism or nearsightedness (myopia), for less dependence on glasses or contact lenses. If cataracts are not an issue for you, refractive lens exchange (RLE) can give you all the benefits of a presbyopia correcting IOL.
Frequently Asked Questions About Presbyopia
Can presbyopia be prevented?
No, presbyopia cannot be prevented or cured with eye exercises or other home remedies. However, it is still important to care for your eye health by wearing sun protective glasses outside and eating a nutritious diet.
Will I get presbyopia if I’ve had LASIK?
You can still get presbyopia if you have had LASIK to correct your distance vision. LASIK corrects vision by reshaping your cornea, but presbyopia occurs as a result of changes in the lens of your eye.
What age do people start wearing reading glasses for presbyopia?
This varies person by person—one friend may need reading glasses in their late 30’s while another doesn’t notice vision changes until their late 40’s.
How is presbyopia diagnosed?
Your optometrist or ophthalmologist can diagnose presbyopia during a routine eye exam.
Contact Tidewater Eye Center
At Tidewater Eye Centers, we are dedicated to helping you get the vision you want at any age. Contact us if you think you may have presbyopia or if you are seeking an alternative to reading glasses.
1 Mayo Clinic. Presbyopia. Available: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/presbyopia/symptoms-causes/syc-20363328 Accessed April 26, 2021.
1 American Academy of Ophthalmology. Intraocular Implants (IOLs). Available: https://www.aao.org/eye-health/treatments/iols-intraocular-lens. Accessed July 15, 2021.